What can Aromatherapy Really Offer?

During my days in nursing in the NHS I was exposed to a lot of research, some of a high quality but much of it dubious to say the least. I find the same is true as an Aromatherapist. The difference is that now, I am also seeing a lot of pseudo-research. YouTube videos passing off opinion or anecdotal evidence as research.

When a client tells me that they feel a lot better after a treatment and slept well that night, it does not mean an aromatherapy massage is a cure for depression/anxiety/insomnia to give a recent example.

The client in question is going through a divorce at the moment and a lot of her problems will not be resolved at least till that is out of the way. That is not to say it can’t help with these things. I don’t doubt that the treatment helped her sleep better that night and that may well have helped her with getting on with some of the tasks around the divorce. But I don’t know of any research studies, never mind peer reviewed ones that look at detail into whether as a short term intervention a massage is useful for that sort of thing.

In my opinion it is but that is not enough for me to make a video stating it as fact.

The number of clients I see is too low to base any solid research on but I keep notes including the feedback I get from clients and if I hear of someone doing a research study that my information is relevant to I contact them. I also ask my clients if they would be willing to answer a few questions from the researcher and on a few occasions have put them in contact with each other.

There is research indicating that aromatherapy can help with anxiety, insomnia and depression and a good many other things. Cure is another matter and even if it can in some cases, we are a long way from proving it.